Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Adoption Update: Living Expectantly Vs. Living With Expectations 3.13.13

During Sunday School we heard a message on Living Expectantly vs. Living with Expectations. This REALLY hit home for me.   Last week I begrudgingly received rebuke from my sister (who I can always count on for a healthy dose of reality when I need it). She graciously pointed out that when I was murmuring and impatient, I was not actually waiting on the Lord. I was waiting for the fulfillment of my expectations.  When those expectations (time frames, chosen sibling groups) were not fulfilled, I was allowing the spirit of bitterness to consume me and drain my patience.  She was right. I had entered a dangerous cycle.  I wasn’t just waiting with expectancy for God’s will….I was waiting with expectation for my own.  How foolishly we fall in the flesh.   I managed to stay afloat the first year of the process, but after we hit that mark, my hope waivered and was soon replaced with expectations.  Expectations meant making demands. Expectations meant calling God a liar.  Expectations meant arrogantly assuming we’re ready and wondering why God wasn’t.

Thinking back, I went through a similar experience when I was “expecting” our daughter 4 years ago.  At the beginning of the pregnancy I was living expectantly:  I was focused on the blessing to come, how I could prepare for her arrival, and what I needed to change, fix, and improve before she got here.   But, at 40 weeks  I began living with expectations: I started imagining the beauty of the birth experience (very disappointing), what our daughter would look like(very surprising), and how our life would change when we brought her home(we didn’t have a clue).  It was all a big upset in the end, rather than a miracle….because of expectations.  Apparently, I am a slow learner, because there I was again last week.

 As I reflected on the mistake I was foolishly repeating, God gave me the strength to turn from it immediately.  Now, I’m sprinting in the other direction, trying to make up the ground I lost. Is this what Paul meant when he was talking about “running a race”? Whew!

I had been so unbelieving. So hopeless and discouraged.  Only the blood of Christ can cleanse such sinful self-pity.  Only Christ can restore my soul.  He, always my shepherd, and I, always His lost lamb. With His strength, over the last few days I shed the expectations that gave place to the devil. I repented for my partnership with bitterness and unbelief.  I was forgiven and encouraged.  The Lord restored my resolve, my patience, and my purpose. But, where was my hope?

We got a phone call from our caseworker today.  We’ve been submitted for TWO sibling groups in our county!  Now we are waiting to hear if we’re being considered for either one or both of them.   There it is….there is my hope.  Thank you, Lord.

Now, my focus is on living expectantly, with hope in the Lord’s mighty works.

 “The hope of the righteous [shall be] gladness: but the expectation of the wicked shall perish.” – Proverbs 10:28


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